Santa Cruz Island: Island Scrub-Jay – Life Bird #702 and Island Fox

Sue, Dan and I were up early to get to Ventura Harbour, to catch the Island Packers boat to Prisoners Harbour on Santa Cruz Island.  Its a 1.5 hour crossing, but it takes about 2 hours because they drop off campers and hikers at Scorpion Point.

The Island Scrub-Jay, an endemic found only on Santa Cruz.

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Once we arrived at the island and were briefed on the rules, it took about 3 minutes to see the first Jay fly by.  We all wanted a better look at the bird so we hiked up the mountain following our guide.  Rules were simple, follow the guide up, stay on the trail and when you want to turn around, you’re on your own.

We had only gone about 400 yards when an Island Jay flew in and landed close.

Island Scrub-Jay – Life Bird #702

IslandScrubJay

After walking up for an hour, it was about as far as we wanted, we turned around, leaving the pack.  We hadn’t gone very far when we encountered one of the islands other endemics, the Island Fox.

SantaCruzIslandFox

We took a break at the picnic tables and a Song Sparrow was foraging nearby.

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Island Song Sparrow

IslandSongSparrow

The rest of the day we all went our separate ways photographing and exploring the area.  Many lovely thing to photograph.

Allen’s Hummingbird – (sedentarius)

AllensSedentariusHummingbird

Wandering Glider

WanderingGlider

California Sister

CaliforniaSister

Orange-crowned Warbler

OrangeCrownedWarblerSordida

I spent a bit of time taking photos of the many gulls on the dock.

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We completely enjoyed our day on the island, a must for any lister.

On our way back in we passed by the Russian Mermaid statue at Soter Point, which was donated by Alec & Tatyana Benke who emigrated from Kazakhstan to the United States and the mermaid statue is a symbol of their love for their new country.

Catalina1

Ciao for now

 

 

 

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